Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Bill Gates Has an Insane Idea to Save the Human Race From Global Warming

Bill Gates, the computer nerd-turned-billionaire-turned left-wing activist wants to save humanity.

He wants to dim the sun.

That’s right, the founder of Microsoft apparently thinks that the sun is the Blue Screen of Death in the sky and is funding research at Harvard University into dimming the sun to cool the earth. The solar geoengineering project, called Stratospheric Controlled Perturbation Experiment (SCoPEx), will be flying a test balloon above Sweden next year as part of this research. The plan is to eventually release 2 kg of calcium carbonate dust into the atmosphere in a year or two to study how what impact it may have.

You read that correctly. They want to put chalk dust in the atmosphere. Are you old enough to have ever cleaned blackboard erasers for your teacher? That nasty cloud of chalk dust you inhaled during that process is what they want to put into the atmosphere.

What could possibly go wrong?

Who would have thought that the answer to “man-made climate change” would be more man-made climate change?

That said, environmentalists aren’t entirely on board. “There is no merit in this test except to enable the next step. You can’t test the trigger of a bomb and say ‘This can’t possibly do any harm’,” said Nicklas Hällström, director of the Swedish green think-tank WhatNext?

Of course, Hällström’s biggest issue with this concept is that he thinks that it will create the impression that we can still use fossil fuels.

There are several problems with this whole thing.

For starters, radical environmentalists can’t seem to decide whether man-made climate change is causing the earth to warm or cool. That’s why what was once referred to as “global warming” is now called by the more vague term “climate change.”

Second, even if you ascribe to the idea that climate change is man-made and not part of a natural cycle, even the most radical of predictions refer to its impact of fractions of a degree over many, many decades. Dimming the sun would likely have a more dramatic impact on global temperatures. It is widely believed that the reason why dinosaurs were wiped out was an asteroid impact that released particles into the atmosphere, blocking the sun and causing a dramatic drop in global temperatures. Is this really something we want to try ourselves?

Third, how would adding particles in the air contribute to the greenhouse effect? Do we really want to find out?

New York can’t buy its way out of blackouts

Battery nonsense

New York City will soon be home to the world’s biggest utility-scale battery system, designed to back up its growing reliance on intermittent renewables. At 400 MWh this batch of batteries will be more than triple the 129 MWh world leader in Australia.

The City of New York’s director of sustainability (I am not making this title up), Mark Chambers, is ecstatic, bragging: “Expanding battery storage is a critical part of how we advance momentum to confront the climate emergency while meeting the energy needs of all New Yorkers. Today’s announcement demonstrates how we can deliver this need at significant scale.”

In reality the scale here is incredibly insignificant.

In the same nonsensical way, Tim Cawley, the president of Con Edison, New York’s power utility, gushes thus: “Utility scale battery storage will play a vital role in New York’s clean energy future, especially in New York City where it will help to maximize the benefit of the wind power being developed offshore.”

This puts the Con in Con Edison.

Here is the reality when it comes to the scale needed to reliably back up intermittent renewables. For simplicity let us suppose New York City is 100% wind powered. Including solar in the generating mix makes it more complicated but does not change the unhappy outcome very much.

NYC presently peaks at around 32,000 MW needed to keep the lights on. If Mr. Biden makes all the cars and trucks electric it might be closer to 50,000 MW but let’s stick to reality.

This peak occurs during summer heat waves which are caused by stagnant high pressure systems called Bermuda highs. These highs often last for a week and because they are stagnant there is no wind power generation. Wind turbines require something like sustained winds of 10 mph to move the blades and more like a whistling 30 mph to generate full power. During a Bermuda high folks are happy to get the occasional 5 mph breeze. These huge highs cover many states so it is not like we can get the juice from next door.

So for reliability we need, say, seven days of backup, which is 168 hours. Here’s the math:

32,000 MW x 168 hours = 5,376,000 MWh of stored juice needed to just make it. Mind you for normal reliability we usually add 20% or so. Did I mention electric cars?

It is easy to see that a trivial 400 MWh is not “significant scale.” It is infinitesimal scale. Nothing. Nada. Might as well not exist.

More specifically, 5,376,000 divided by 400 = 13,440 so only 13,439 more to go.

On the other hand, this measly 400 MWh battery array may well cost half a billion dollars, which is significant, especially to the New Yorkers who will pay for it. No cost figures are given because the system is privately owned, but EIA reports that the average utility scale battery system runs around $1.5 million a MWh of storage capacity. That works out to $600 million for this insignificant toy.

So what would it cost to reliably back up wind power, at this MWh cost and NYC’s scale? Just over $8,000,000,000,000 or EIGHT TRILLION DOLLARS. I have not seen this stupendous sum mentioned in the media. Perhaps Con Ed has not mentioned it.

Then too, New York State has the same problem. Only much bigger if New York City is included, which it often is.

But hey, maybe the cost will come down a few trillion. Not if we create a seller’s market by rushing into intermittent renewables, which is certainly where we are headed. After all, this is just New York City. Imagine what backing up America with batteries might cost. Don’t bother because it is impossible.

I should also add that we have no idea how to make 5 million MWh of batteries work together. The tiny 400 will be a challenge. It may not be possible.

Maybe fracked geothermal, the reliable renewable, is the answer. Or how about coal, oil, gas and nuclear power? Too bad they are all out of fashion.

All of this battery backup hype is a scam, and not just in New York either. The papers are full of this con, from coast to coast. The utilities know perfectly well that these loudly touted battery buys are a hoax, but they are getting rich building the wind and solar systems the politicians are calling for.

The voters are oblivious to these impossible numbers, since they are told that intermittent wind and solar are cheaper than reliable coal, gas and nuclear. Only when the sun shines bright and the wind blows hard, which is not all that often.

Reality is just sitting there, waiting. It can’t work so it won’t work. At this point it is just a question of how and when we find out the hard way

Joe Biden Is Building A Secret EPA

We already have an Environmental Protection Agency, and we don’t need another one pulling strings for radical climate activists behind closed doors.

This week, President-elect Joe Biden announced a slate of nominations and selections for a variety of environmental positions within his administration. Unsurprisingly, these announcements were met with open arms by the media. But, if Biden is so proud of his upcoming environmental actions, why is he building a new environmental office within the White House? The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) exists for a reason – and it’s not to operate in secret from the White House.

In appointing Gina McCarthy to lead the newly created Office of Domestic Climate Policy, Joe Biden is placing his controversial environmental agenda out of view from the American people. McCarthy is set to join former Sen. John Kerry in a questionable environmental role which doesn’t require Senate confirmation, meaning less congressional oversight. However, when you look at McCarthy’s previous experience, you might understand why Biden doesn’t want her in front of any congressional committee.

McCarthy would join the Biden White House after leading the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), an environmental organization that faced scrutiny for their relationship to Chinese entities. Of course, the “solutions” for which the NRDC routinely pushes just so happen to have the potential to destroy American energy independence in favor of Chinese-made solar panels, but I’m sure that’s just a coincidence.

Less than three months ago, and while McCarty was leading the NRDC, members of Congress called for an investigation into the ties between foreign actors on environmental non-profits in the United States. Specifically, they called for an examination of the “Sea Change Foundation,” which has given millions to the NRDC.

To anyone paying attention, it’s clear Joe Biden is trying to play us for fools … again.

After spending the last six months trying to convince us that he doesn’t support extreme ideas like a full ban on fracking and the Green New Deal, Biden is creating bureaucratic positions for leaders that are fully behind those disastrous proposals. His awkward inability to appear as an environmental moderate while still appeasing the radical eco-left like Aleaxandria Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders led to more than few embarrassing moments during his campaign.

Now that he looks to govern, how will Biden strike the balance between the eco-left’s insane demands and the moderate image he needs to project? His solution is simple, yet misleading — he’ll have the EPA attempt to pacify the public, and his secret environmental office do the bidding of radical environmentalists. Again, if Joe Biden is so proud of what he’s going to implement, he shouldn’t shy away from Congress and the public.

The terrible reality is that Gina McCarthy will help form a direct line between her former questionable employer and the White House, leaving America’s energy workers without a voice.

There is too much at stake for our country to allow Joe Biden to create a secret EPA that will operate behind closed doors.

No, Weather Channel, 2020 Did Not Bring Unprecedented Climate Disasters

An article published by the Weather Channel tries to link climate change to a variety of environmental “disasters,” that struck around the world in 2020. The article cites limited evidence for any link. In reality, none of the asserted disasters are tied to supposed human-caused climate change.

In the Weather Channel article titled, “2020’s Worst Environmental Disasters, and How Climate Change Played a Role,” the author writes, “In a year of unprecedented disasters, much of the damage done to our planet in 2020 was self-inflicted.”

Historical records and data show none of the disasters discussed in the article are, in fact, unprecedented.

Among the environmental tribulations the Weather Channel discusses are oil spills, dams breaking, and wildfires.

Regarding oil spills, humans have indeed caused some oil spills, but these have occurred either through human error or poor equipment maintenance. Climate change plays no role in oil spills, regardless of the Weather Channel’s unsubstantiated speculation.

Regarding dam failures, floods from unexpectedly heavy rainfall can undoubtedly combine with poor maintenance or poor government decision-making to result in dams failing, but there is no scientific link to climate change. As pointed out in Climate At A Glance: Floods, the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) acknowledges having “low confidence” in any climate change impact regarding the frequency or severity of floods. This includes “low confidence” in even the “sign” of any changes—meaning, it is just as likely that climate change is making floods less frequent and less severe.

In addition, a study on the climate impact on flooding for the USA and Europe, published in the Journal of Hydrology, Volume 552, September 2017, Pages 704-717, found: “The number of significant trends was about the number expected due to chance alone. Changes in the frequency of major floods are dominated by multidecadal variability.”

Regarding wildfires, the IPCC has found across the mid-latitudes (including the U.S.) there has been a modest but measurable increase in moisture, which mitigates wildfires.

The Weather Channel points to Australia’s tragic 2019-2020 wildfire season as proof of warming-induced wildfire expansion. The Weather Channel failed to note that before the 2019-2020 wildfire season, the continent had for nearly a decade experienced above-average rainfall. At the same time, Australia’s government had decided not to manage its brush and trees, the fuel load for wildfires. These two factors combined to create tinder box conditions which exploded when Australia’s normal drought cycle reoccurred.

In California, the situation is much the same, with the article admitting, “Particularly in California … decisions on forest management and fire suppression, and expansion of homes and businesses into less-developed areas have combined to make the 2020 fire season one of the most destructive in recorded history.” The Weather Channel blamed a “human caused global warming,” as well, but the best available data indicate no such link exists. The article says, “[v]egetation left dry by climate change is fueling unprecedentedly large wildfires,” yet vegetation is not being left dry by climate change.

Indeed, As reported in Climate at a Glance: Drought, the IPCC reports with “high confidence” that precipitation has increased over mid-latitude land areas of the Northern Hemisphere (including the United States) during the past 70 years.

Moreover, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reports America is currently is undergoing its longest period in recorded history with less than 40 percent of the country experiencing “very dry” conditions. Also, the United States in 2017 – and then again in 2019 – registered its smallest percentage of land area experiencing drought.

As reported in Climate at a Glance: Wildfires, long-term data from the U.S. National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC) show wildfires have dramatically declined in number and severity in recent decades. Reporting data on U.S. wildfires from as far back as 1926, NIFC documents that the number of acres annually burned recently is only1/4th to 1/5th of the annual acres burned in the 1930s.

The wildfires burning in the U.S. West in the past few years are more appropriately labeled, “Greenie Fires, Not Climate Fires,” as James Taylor wrote in a recent Climate Realism article discussing the issue.

As Taylor notes, “The reason why wildfires in the U.S. West, and especially in Pacific Coast states, are becoming more severe in recent years is because federal, state, and local governments have followed environmental extremists’ demands that we no longer actively manage our forests. Proactive forest management requires thinning of forests, prescriptive burns, thinning of underbrush, and removal of dead trees that serve as super-fuel for forest fires. Environmental extremists have largely blocked these activities during the past 30 in the U.S. West, leading to explosive wildfire conditions that defy global trends.”

2020 was undoubtedly a bad year for environmental disasters, but contrary to the Weather Channel’s assertions, assertions made without citing supporting evidence, there is limited if any proof that climate change contributed to the problems.


My other blogs. Main ones below

http://dissectleft.blogspot.com (DISSECTING LEFTISM)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com TONGUE-TIED)

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH)

http://john-ray.blogspot.com (FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC) Saturdays only

http://australian-politics.blogspot.com (AUSTRALIAN POLITICS)

https://heofen.blogspot.com/ (MY OTHER BLOGS)


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